Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Ordinary Frustrations, Everyday Pleasures

I had intended to write in both my blogs this morning. Got up, had a nice cup of coffee handed to me. No, scratch that. Had an AMAZING cup of coffee handed to me. Jeff made it in the new french press I gave him for Valentine's Day, and WOW! It made the coffee taste sooooo much better. Pricey, but now I know, totally worth it. Here's a photo - the one in the middle. Smart of me to buy him a coffee maker so he can make me coffee, yes? And, I guess, in deference to the title of this post, this most definitely counts as an everyday pleasure.

Steaming, hadn't-lost-important-oils coffee next to the keyboard, I set upon my first blog entry, for Laume's Studio, but soon discovered that I was in an uphill battle with the distractions my family continued to set off (kinda like firecrackers) behind me. ARGH! I love my husband, I really do. But it's hard to get things done on the days he's home from work. (he doesn't have a typical work schedule) I couldn't really complain about it though, because we don't have any place else in the house I could have sent him to do the things he was doing. And mostly, he was taking care of his own tasks and activities, he wasn't overtly trying to sabatoge me. But Geeze Louise, that man can chatter! I know, so can I, but I don't think I drop chatter into other people's workspaces. I guess the trouble is, it's home, to him it's not a workplace.

Yes, William is usually home, interupting me as I write, but for some reason that's not as distracting. For one thing, we have a routine to the way we do things. The interuptions aren't unexpected. And teenage boys, for the most part, aren't known for their chattering abilities. More often they're thought of as monosyllabic creatures. William does his part to propogate the stereotype.

Plus, for some inexplicable reason, Jeff's voice is the most difficult for me to tune out of all the family. And it wasn't needful banter. Like, I'd just get a thought worked out in my head, be ready to type and he'd walk by with a "Oh. I gotta call them on that." What? A minute or two later from somewhere in the same room he comments "Hmm. Nevermind. I won't interupt you?" Huh? And then "We'll pick up the car this afternoon, right?" ARRRRRRRGH! I tried to hide behind earphones and itunes, but it didn't work too well. My "mom" ears are too highly trained to ignore what I was trying to tune out.

I gave up on writing this blog and went off to run family tasks and errands. No one was gonna leave me be until I helped them with their own schedules anyway. I know when to give it up. Went to pick up the car. Went to the Walmart for that list of things that, regardless of their mundaneness, are integral to live's schedule - toilet paper, a belt for William (William's old one broke three days ago and he's been walking around with one hand on his pants ever since, for fear that they'll slip down around his ankles), Vitamin C, garbage bags, frozen burritos.

Then I swung round home and picked up hubby for a late lunch/early dinner at our local Mexican spot. I let him pick the topics, tell me all the things he'd been verbally "sitting on" all morning while he went along with my contention that I was "working", and then I got him back by talking about other stuff until his eyes glazed over and he'd lost the ability to nod or grunt in recognition that he was listening. Sitting in a big picture window, watching the town drive or walk by, munching on warm, salted tortilla chips with a scoop of fresh pico de gallo - definitely one of life's little pleasures.

Next a stop at the car rental place to take care of when our Subie will be in the shop next week, and last but not least, the market, where we only needed three items, but I ended up getting about thirty, so we'd have interesting menu choices for awhile. Some rice pudding and curry chicken salad from the deli. Fresh fruit juices. Oversized heads of lettuce. My favorite organic cereals on sale. All everyday pleasures. We ended up bumping into a half dozen people we knew, always a possibility in a small town, so our quick stop at the store ended up using up the rest of the afternoon. Shelly called while I was on the baking goods aisle and chatted with me until the end of the next aisle, cereal and baby foods, setting up a dinner date for tonight. But, no matter. Another small pleasure. It was relaxing. We enjoyed ourselves.

It's usually like that. Back when I had small kids, I used to love all those one stop errands, the ones that are individually small, but accumulatively tend to fill up our days. It was a way to be with them while still being out and about and getting a sense of interacting with other adults at the same time. Nowadays though, I resent the way they fill up my time (the errands, not the kids, who do still fill up some of my time even though they no longer live at home, but that's another topic altogether) and I usually put them off until the husband and teen wail loud enough or the timing becomes critical enough for me to do them. As much as I resent the interuption, once I'm out the door and cruising about town, it's usually not an upleasant experience and something good almost always comes from it, over and above completing the tasks themselves that is. I bump into an old friend, I stop for a coffee, I score a new novel at the used bookstore. I wander into another store or aisle and find something fun to buy, I get out in the day and enjoy the blue skies or the gusty wind or whatever else the weather throws at me. What starts out as a frustration, turned into a pleasure.

See? Despite all the detours and distractions, eventually this blog got written. In fact, it gave me something to write about. I guess it's that old "sow's ear into a silk purse" deal. Oink.


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